Thursday, September 08, 2016

Flags at the proms

We really do need to move on from re-fighting the EU referendum to the very important and very much still live argument about what Brexit should actually look like.

Unfortunately some people - on both sides - just don't get this.

The latest piece of silliness is that, if this express article is correct, some Remain supporters are planning to wave lots of European Union flags at the last night of the proms at the Royal Albert Hall on Saturday (10th September).

It is a free country and within reason people should be able to wave whatever flags they like (I might have a problem with DA'ESH flags but that would be an entirely different matter.) And waving the EU flag during the "Ode to Joy" would make perfect sense.

Nevertheless, and I say this as someone who voted Remain myself, anything which looks like trying to "rain on the parade" of the traditional celebration of British culture and music on the last night of the Proms is not going to come over well.

We are leaving the EU but as all sensible"Leave" supporters would agree, this is perfectly compatible with wanting to remain friends and trading partners with those countries which are not.

Setting up the wish to keep EU links as a rival to British patriotism is definitely not a good idea.


Jim said...

I cant imagine it being seen as a rival to British Patriotism.

But then again I could not understand the problem with a tweet about a house with St Georges crosses on it.

It took 3 or 4 people, including your good self, for me to see any issues at all, and even then it was more the mps own reaction than the tweet itself.

To me EU flag waving at the proms would be more like "arnt we all grown up, look we have told the EU we want to leave their little club but we done so as "good friends and neighbours", and we still are good friends, trade partners and neighbours.

Chris Whiteside said...

That's a very grown-up and sensible response. If everyone sees it the way you have, there will not be a problem.

The difficulty is that I think the people who are promoting this do appear to be suggesting that it is a protest rather than just a message to the EU that we still want to be friends - a message with which I would entirely agree, as I think would most Leave supporters.

Here's what a report in the Independent says about it.

And hence some people may react the way the author of the Express piece I linked to did.

If they act on the suggestion in the "Independent" report, however, to have flags which have the Union Flag on one side and the EU flag on the other, I no longer think that a reasonable person would see this as setting up EU support as an alternative to British patriotism and the risk of a negative reaction is much less. In that event I would be much less concerned.